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John Diether
Automotive Editor - November 13, 2014

Expert Rating

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Unlike other websites and magazines, our ratings are not based solely on a singular road test, but rather a more encompassing batch of criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value. When comparing vehicles using our Rating System, it's important to note that the rating earned by each vehicle correlates only to the models within its class. For example, a compact car cannot be compared to a SUV—They are different vehicles altogether.

You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

5-Star: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

4-Star: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

3-Star: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

2-Star: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

1-Star: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.


The entry-level model in BMW’s 5 Series, the 528 offers the comfort and technology you expect in a midsize luxury sedan at an accessible price. While it's true that today's 5 Series emphasizes traditional luxury car virtues over all-out performance, the 528 can still be equipped to meet the demands of enthusiast drivers.

What's New for 2015

LED fog lamps and a sport steering wheel are now standard, and the Modern trim line has departed.

Choosing Your BMW 528

The 528 receives a turbocharged 2-liter four-cylinder engine with 240 horsepower, matched to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The engine features an automatic stop-start function to assist with fuel efficiency. You can expect 27 mpg in combined driving from the rear-drive 528, and 26 mpg with the optional all-wheel drive setup. Selectable driving modes allow you to adjust steering, throttle and transmission response.

The 528 starts out with 17-inch wheels, leatherette seating with front power and driver memory, wood interior trim, a sunroof, navigation, Bluetooth phone and audio, and a 10-speaker sound system with CD and HD radio. There are two available trim lines: Luxury and M Sport. The Luxury line features 18-or 19-inch multi-spoke wheels, additional chrome accents outside and special interior trim choices. The M Sport gets a sport-tuned suspension, an aerodynamic body kit, 18- or 19-inch double-spoke wheels and specific M Sport trim throughout.

Moving on to option packages, the Premium adds leather upholstery, a hands-free power trunk lid, keyless ignition and satellite radio. The Luxury Seating package gets you multicontour front seats with ventilation and massage, while the Cold Weather package provides heated seats all around, a heated steering wheel and headlamp washers.

Full LED adaptive headlamps with automatic high beam control come in the Lighting Package. The Dynamic Handling package firms up the suspension with adaptive dampers and stabilizer bars. The Driver Assistance package bundles together a rearview camera, a head-up display, and front and rear parking sensors. A Plus version of the same throws in blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, a surround-view camera system, active collision mitigation and (optional) adaptive cruise control.

There’s also a vast selection of individual options, including an automated parallel parking system, infrared night vision, four-zone climate control and a premium Bang & Olufsen sound system.

CarsDirect Tip

We consider the Premium package with its leather seats and other upgrades to be essential to the 528's character. From a safety standpoint, the Driver Assistance package -- especially the Plus version -- provides a lot of security for the money.

Choose your BMW 528 »

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